Crate P.A.L Trial Demonstrates Feasibility of User-Pay Model
A successful trial of a user-pays unloading platform at Kilcoy Global Foods Australia (KGF) in SE Queensland has demonstrated that it is feasible to share the cost of installing and operating state-of-the-art safety infrastructure at higher volume livestock facilities. Costs can typically be fully recovered in less than three years. ALRTA recommends that livestock facilities consider the user-pay option as a means of fast-tracking the installation of loading or unloading gantries.
Loading and unloading livestock is a high-risk activity. However, safety risks can be greatly reduced by the installation of moveable gantries, providing safe access to livestock crates and loading ramps. In an effort to encourage the uptake of this type of safety infrastructure, in 2019 ALRTA conducted an investigation into the feasibility of a user pays cost recovery model.
The 12-week trial of an innovative unloading gantry saw industry, government and the National Heavy Vehicle Regulator come together to improve the safety of drivers unloading cattle at feedlots, saleyards and processors. The $102,000 project was funded through the NHVR’s Heavy Vehicle Safety Infrastructure Initiative, supported by the Federal Government.
Designed and installed by ProWay, the Crate Parallel Access Landing (P.A.L.) provides a safe working platform along the length of a B-double set of trailers. When using the Crate P.A.L. drivers no longer need to climb up and down along the side of the crate, reducing the risk of falling from height or being struck by livestock.
Feedback about using the unloading platform was positive with drivers reporting that the Crate P.A.L. is much safer as well as quick and easy to use.
Data collected and analysed for this project included daily truck numbers delivering to KGF, Crate P.A.L usage rates, unloading times before and after the installation of the Crate P.A.L and driver feedback. Usage data was sourced from the Avdata charging system.
The feasibility study demonstrated that:
- It is possible to operate a Crate P.A.L. on a user-pay basis.
- There is a typical supply/demand relationship between user prices and usage rates (i.e. usage rates increase as the price per use is decreased).
- At the KGF site, the optimum price was $10.00 per use with a cost recovery period of 2.6 years.
- At other sites, installation, maintenance and charging costs could typically be fully recovered in less than three years.
- User-pay is likely to be feasible at all sites with more than 15 truck deliveries per day.
- Installation of a Crate P.A.L. improves unloading safety without reducing efficiency.
Please contact ALRTA if you have any questions 02 6247 54 34 or contact us.
A video demonstration of the innovative unloading gantry can be viewed directly below.